Girl Talk Career Blog

May 9, 2010

Social Media Anxiety Disorder

Filed under: social media — lisalahey @ 12:53 pm

Hard to believe it but today I met a young woman who is not at all in the habit of using social media.  Actually that’s an understatement. She has never used it. She has no memberships, no networking, no connections.  Nothing.  Yet she is currently searching for work and having little luck, if any. 

I explained to her that 63% of HR recruiters now actively seek out new employees using social media. Facebook, Linkedin (especially this one) and Twitter seem to be their favourites.  Hence the reason why so many people post links to their resumes and blogs on these sites.  Consider that when you do set up an account and post your resume and other info millions of people can access it. Talk about a quick and far-reaching blast of PR!

So I explained this to the jobless young woman who replied, unimpressed, “Oh. Really?” Really.

I asked her why she hasn’t got any social media memberships and she merely shrugged. “I don’t know.” Interesting.

It wasn’t so long ago that I avoided social media myself. I thought it was juvenile and meant for teens and early 20-somethings. Of course that was until I educated myself on the many practical, professional uses of social media. Consider that even if you are employed you should always be networking and keeping your profile updated. You just never know when your situation will change and you end up being “downsized”. Should that be the case you may be in a much better position for having built up your networks and profile using social media as you search for a new job than if you hadn’t done so.

This is not to say social media will get you a job. It won’t. It will get you connected to people who either know of job openings or know of companies that are hiring (possibly their own) and that can set you on the path towards employment again. However having said that there are a few rules to keep in mind when job-hunting via SM:

  1. Never say you are looking for a job. Wow. That is so desperate.
  2. Recruiters want passive candidates, not active ones. That means they want people who are already employed and not actually looking for work. Why? Because the employed people are employed for a reason: they’re good workers who know their job well. Those are the people the recruiters often go after. How will they find them unless they’re on SM?
  3. Don’t put your phone number on SM.
  5. Offer some information or help of some sort to other people first. Then you might get the same in return.
  6. But do so in an altruistic manner, without having an ulterior motive and of course the best time to do that is NOT when you are actively looking for work. Offer help/networking etc when you are secure and smugly employed in a job you enjoy.

I hope the young woman who is currently job hunting gets memberships on SM. I hope she reads this post and considers some of the tips for how to NOT job hunt on SM. I hope she makes some connections even if they can’t help her get a job. After all that is the point of social media.  To socialize not see what’s in it for you.

1 Comment »

  1. you are probably ahead of many businesses Lisa. I found when looking for technical experts that specific work-job seeking sites can net results. However most businesses are still in the last century and if they do have a web-presence it’s pretty static. The week-end newspapers are still full with job vacancies being released via the print media. Many smaller businesses don’t even have a webpresence but do have an email address. Social networks are for show. Those who are interested in you once you’re `in’ want to shove whatever they are into down your head. And I can bet it ain’t related to your aspirant. Having used these social network sites for business purposes [now defunct] I found them simply time consuming and rarely worth anything short of extending one’s webpresence. Recruiters don’t trawl sites. They haven’t got the time. They wait for prospective employees to come to them.

    Comment by almostvoid — May 10, 2010 @ 10:27 am | Reply

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